There are some Saint’s whose work began only to help those around them and yet became so much more than that. Saint Teresa of Avila is one such saint.
Known as the reformer of the Carmelite order, seeking to return her beloved order to a more austere life, Saint Teresa sought also to encourage her fellow sisters to a more contemplative life. With this in mind she wrote The Way Of Perfection and The Interior Castle.
For many of us, especially we mothers at home with much on our plates and little time to devote to spiritual reading, accessing the depths of such a spiritually dense book appears to be an unattainable goal.
But Ignatius Press’ recent publication of the second edition of The Way Of Prayer, written by Father Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, O.C.D, proves to be an incredible alternative.
Accessing the spiritual wealth of Saint Teresa of Avila is no mean feat and yet Fr Gabriel manages to balance that alongside a rich historical context, and a deep understanding of what drove the Saint to accomplish writing The Way Of Perfection and The Interior Castle in the first place.
The Way Of Prayer is a profound exploration of the apostolate and insight of an inspiring Doctor of the Church.
The text, though richly patterned with spiritual and contextual information, is not heavy or tiresome. Instead it is an engaging read, it successfully blends history and theology with the character of Saint Teresa of Avila.
Fr Gabriel’s style of prose is, though thoughtful and accurate, easy to follow and understand. His explanations are well constructed and supported by quotes from Saint Teresa of Avila, which mean that for the average reader with little or no theological background they are able to access both the original text and the accessible explanation.
As a book for personal spiritual reading and reflection I highly recommend this but I would also equally recommend it for group study or book club. There is something for everyone here, regardless of your theological background.
You can grab your copy here.
About the Author: I am a reformed perfectionist who is now a stay at home mum with five children under nine years of age. I am a qualified journalist and graphic designer with a decided creative streak, and run a hobby business called Emily Shaw Design + Write. I will attempt most craft activities and love to write about topical - and especially controversial - issues.